Heavy Anti-Aircraft Battery Recovery
One of our ongoing projects, which has taken some time to put together, is based at Val de la Mare Reservoir on the Mont Rossignol side. There you will find traces of a WWII Heavy Flak Battery. The Battery was called 3./GemFlakAbt 364 and known as Batterie Metz. The Battery was constructed in late 1941 and had six 88mm and three 20mm anti-aircraft guns, just a small percentage of the 165 anti-aircraft guns recorded on the island by November 1944. 3./GemFlakAbt 364 was part of Flak-Regiment 40.
Below is some of the key equipment the battery had:
6 x 8.8 Flak 36/37 Guns
3 x 2cm Flak 38
1 x 150cm searchlight
1 x Würzburg Reise Radar
With the kind permission of Jersey Water, we are trying to recover some of the buried bunkers and emplacements. We believe they were filled around 1980. This is not, at this point, a project to open any bunkers that have been sealed since the war. We also need to note that in the case of Type 617, access was challenging but not impossible in the past few years.
There will be three phases to our work at the Heavy Flak Battery at Mont Rossignol.
1. Recovery of the Type 617 Bunker
2. Create Paths and recover Three 8,8 Gun positions
3. Recovery of The L403 Bunker
Phase 1 started in February, with us working on the Type 617 Bunker. This bunker is one of three similar constructions in Jersey, all having being built by the Organisation Todt using forced labour prior to 1st July 1943. This one was designated as N17. There are believed to be only 20 created as part of the German European fortress construction program. It is a fortress strength build, having walls & ceiling two metres thick, the length being 17 metres & width being 12.80 metres. It consisted of 850 cubic metres of reinforced concrete, 41 metric ton of Bar Steel & 6.45 metric ton of Soffit Steel. It would have taken approximately 3 months to complete. The telephone exchange bunkers were built at priority points within the fortress telephone network. The telephone exchange bunkers were built at priority points within the fortress telephone network.
Below is what we believe the design of the bunker to look like and we have highlighted the area we need to clear of the soil.